Naturally I was feeling out the dynamics of the group. New people. New personalities. I wondered, “How will I fit in with the pack?” Well... I wish I spent less time focusing on what the others thought of me and more time adding to the conversation with confidence. So I would recommend on your first day, and for the entirety of the class, to speak up! If you’re the type of person who typically likes to go last than make a point to speak up first. If you have an idea than trust your instinct and say it. If it’s wrong you learn from it, if it’s right you learn from it -- it’s a win win. ECT teaches some complex theories and tools that require a lot more than intellect, so it’s important to bounce ideas off the group to really understand the tools for yourself.
Another overall tip is to make the homework a priority as much as possible. I know you have a life (work, family, and friends are important) but trust me that the more “rehearsal” hours you put in outside of class the more you will get out of the experience. You are building a technique at ECT, and it take a lot of time to get to know yourself, so give yourself the time and space you need without distractions.
We are so lucky to have a safe space like ECT to explore our creativity fearlessly, but for those of us who live far away from the beloved shipping docks of San Pedro I feel it’s important to prioritize finding a safe convenient space for yourself where you can explore and play with the tools outside of class. As Virginia Woolf said in her 1928 address to the women of Cambridge University, it’s important to have “a room of one’s own.” Your room of your own is your safe space where art and creativity are your only priority and focus. It’s a space of privilege, and a space where you can listen and get to know your body and mental state in relation to your art. When searching for this space be sure to explore when and where you work best (this may take time to find). Try different things. Do you work best early in the morning? Late at night? In a parking garage? On a roof? There is no right answer but there is an answer that’s right for you, and the more you listen to yourself and explore your truth without apologies the better off you will be.
Fun tip: Come early and warm up whenever possible. Early warm ups are the perfect time to get to know the theatre and your process in a safe and judgement free space. During that warm up time be loud, be messy and have fun.
Last little side note: I would recommend bringing lunch to class as much as possible to avoid the inevitable stress and indigestion that comes with inhaling a slice of Philie B’s pizza when your break goes by much faster than you thought.
Have fun! Take risks! Welcome to the family :-)
<3 Marissa Dubowy (Summer ‘17)
Dark of the Moon (2017)
MRS. ALLEN (u.s.)